Thursday, April 24, 2014

Slow Cooker Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

I read a few recipes for scalloped potatoes and decided to put together my own that had everything I wanted including ham, so that I could make it a main dish. This is a great way to use up some of your leftover Easter ham! You can really make this a bunch of different ways. I used russet potatoes and left the skins on. I sliced them very thin with a mandolin. I also used cheddar and monterey jack cheese, but you could use any kind you like. When the cheese melts into the sauce becomes a little greasy looking. If you want to, you can push the potatoes over and whisk the sauce a little to combine it before serving.

Slow Cooker Scalloped Potatoes and Ham
1 TBSP oil
1/2 cup onion
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp parsley flakes
Pepper to taste
2 1/2 lbs potatoes, thinly sliced
2 cups chopped ham
2 cups shredded cheese

1. Heat oil in a skillet on low/med heat and saute onion and garlic until onion is soft, making sure not to let garlic burn. Remove from heat and set aside.
2. In a bowl combine soup, sour cream, milk, salt, parsley, and pepper. Mix well. Add onion and garlic mixture and stir to combine.
3. Spray the inside of the slow cooker with cooking spray.
4. Layer 1/2 of everything in this order: potato slices, ham, sauce mixture, and cheese. Repeat layers with other half.
5. Cook on low 6-7 hours or high for 4 hours until potatoes are tender. (If your slices are thick it will take a little longer to cook)

Monday, April 14, 2014

Parmesan Asparagus

Over the past few weeks, every time I passed through the produce section at the grocery store, the asparagus called to me...very strange. It must have been because it looked so fresh and spring like. I looked on pinterest for a recipe, because if I'm cooking asparagus, it has to be good (or my kids won't eat it). :) I found this simple recipe and already had the Parmesan in my fridge. Result: 10yo loved it. 8yo and 6yo were very against trying it, but after much persuading they were shocked to find it tasted good. 3yo wouldn't touch it, which is normal for him right now. :/ For the 1/4 cup of shredded cheese on the top, I grated some of a Parmesan brick with my microplane right onto the asparagus. I like shredding the brick because melts better than the pre-shredded Parmesan from the store. This would be a great addition to Easter dinner.

Parmesan Asparagus 
1 bunch Asparagus, washed and ends trimmed
1 cup water
1 TBSP butter
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 TBSPs grated Parmesan cheese (the powdered stuff)
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

1. Put asparagus in a pan wide enough to hold them without bending their heads. They can overlap each other if they need to. Add water and place on high heat on the stove.
2. Cook, covered, on high for 4-6 minutes, depending on the thickness, until asparagus is tender, yet still nice and firm. Carefully shake your spears back and forth halfway through your cook time.
3. Remove from heat and drain. In the same pan, add butter, garlic salt, pepper, and grated Parmesan over your spears, and begin to saute them over medium high heat until butter is melted and the Parmesan begins to get gooey and lightly browned, but not burned. Some will crust on the pan and you can scrape it off.
4. Remove from heat. Sprinkle with a handful of shredded Parmesan and serve.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Easy Chicken Salad - Meal Idea

This is my dream lunch. I have been a little obsessed with it lately. All you need is cooked shredded chicken, chopped apple, chopped celery, seasoned salt, and mayo (or even Greek yogurt). I like to top it with some lettuce or baby spinach. It is especially good with leftover Slow Cooker Apricot Chicken. In my picture, I had it on a Hawaiian Sweet Roll. Yum!